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SC asks Italian envoy not to leave India till further orders

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SC asks Italian envoy not to leave India till further orders
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New Delhi: The Supreme Court Monday extended till further orders its direction restraining Italian envoy Daniele Mancini from leaving the country after Italy reneged on its undertaking that the two marines accused of killing two fishermen off Kerala coast will return.

The apex court had on March 14 asked the Italian Ambassador not to leave the country without its permission, taking exception to his government's refusal to send back the two marines, Massimiliano Lattore and Salvatore Girone.

"Having heard senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi appearing for Italian Ambassador Daniele Mancini and Republic of Italy, we direct to list the matter on April 2, 2013 for further orders.

"The interim order passed on March 14 directing Mancini not to leave India without the permission of this court is extended till further orders," a bench headed by Chief Justice Altamas Kabir said.

The bench, also comprising justices A R Dave and Ranjana Prakash Desai, directed that "all authorities in the country shall take appropriate steps" relating to the order restraining Mancini from leaving India.

Before passing the order, the bench said the period of four weeks for which the marines were allowed to go to Italy to cast their vote was yet to be over and still they have time to return.

"We respected the undertaking (given by the Ambassador) and we allowed them (marines) to go for four weeks which will end on March 22. There is still time for them to come. Strictly speaking they have not still violated our order. It is a case where one government is communicating to another government and we have nothing to do," the bench observed.

The two marines were on board an Italian vessel 'Enrica Lexie' when they allegedly shot dead two fishermen off the Kerala coast on February 15, last year.

PTI

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